Dr Wendy Baltzer - The Effects of an Omega-3 Fatty Acid-Rich Diet with Rehabilitation on Recovery, Activity, and Osteoarthritis in Dogs Following Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy Surgery for Cranial Cruciate Ligament Disease

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Presentation Abstract

Can an omega-3 fatty acid rich diet improve recovery and activity of dogs after surgery for cranial cruciate ligament disease? Is rehabilitation of dogs following cruciate ligament surgery worth all the money and hassle? The answer is yes! In a double-blinded (owners and veterinarians were blinded), placebo-controlled clinical trial, which followed the recovery of dogs after cruciate ligament surgery for 6 months, dogs fed Purina® Pro Plan® Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility® had reduced lameness, reduced inflammation in the operated joint, and reduced progression of arthritis compared to dogs fed a commercial adult dog food. Owners saw less lameness when the dogs were trotting, running or making sharp turns in the dogs fed Purina JM™ diet. Rehabilitation also improved the dogs’ recovery and slowed the development of arthritis. Dogs that had rehabilitation exercise with both home and underwater treadmill treatments were more physically active, even 3 months after treatment, than dogs that did not have postoperative therapy.

Providing a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids and rehabilitating dogs after surgery for cruciate ligament rupture can have lasting beneficial effects helping dogs to return to a more active, healthy lifestyle.

Biography

Dr. Baltzer graduated with a DVM from UC Davis in 1994. She received her PhD at Texas A&M University in 2003 and became board certified in the American College of Veterinary Surgery following her residency at Texas A&M in 2007. She received board certification as a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practioner by the University of Tennessee in 2012 and became a diplomate in the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation-Canine in 2013. From 2005 to 2016, she was an associate professor of small animal surgery and sports medicine at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Oregon State University. She is currently an Associate Professor of small animal surgery at Massey University Institute of Veterinary, Animal and Biomedical Sciences in New Zealand. Her research, which includes over 45 publications, has investigated the effects of oxidant stress on agility exercise in dogs, ligament and tendon injury, augmentation of fracture repair with omentum and the management of osteoarthritis in small animals. She resides in Palmerston North, NZ with her husband, son and daughter, dog and cat.

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